What Does an Associate Buyer Do?

An associate buyer assists with placing and evaluating orders for goods for stores, institutions, and other settings. This person assists the buyer, who is a supervisory employee in charge of a company’s acquisitions. Associate buyers must be familiar with the company’s vendors and systems. People seeking work in this field should have good communication skills as well as attention to detail, and a college degree can be beneficial but is not required.

Depending on the industry and the company, the level of responsibility can vary. Attending conferences and trade shows, meeting with product representatives, and conducting other research to learn more about what is available can all be part of an associate buyer’s job. This includes trend research to determine which products people are likely to want in the coming season for retail stores. In order to identify emerging trends in time to place orders for products that may be in demand, trend-spotting may necessitate research on the streets and online.

Some associate buyers can place orders right away, while others may need to wait for a buyer’s recommendation to be approved first. They communicate with vendors about product shipping and handling, and they may supervise order delivery. Associate buyers can unpack packages, double-check that the invoice and shipping contents are correct, and add products to inventory. Whether it’s putting office supplies in a storage cabinet or shelving new books in a store, the associate buyer can supervise other employees as they stock the new products.

Associate buyers must pay close attention to detail in order to anticipate needs and place orders so that products are available when they are needed. It’s also crucial to be able to research products, vendors, and sources in order to find the best product for a company’s needs, taking into account factors such as cost, country of origin, sustainability, and other potential issues. As an associate buyer, you may be responsible for supervising employees and resolving disputes with vendors if there are issues with an order.

An associate’s degree in a subject like business management may be beneficial to people interested in careers in this field, but it is not required. It’s crucial to gain experience working under the supervision of a buyer. The majority of people who work in this field do so through apprenticeship and on-the-job training rather than formal education. Once you’ve gained experience and training with a company, you might be able to move up the ranks to become an associate buyer or switch jobs to a company with more opportunities.